Speaking Up About What You Can Contribute does not make You Self-Centered or Self-Serving, it Means You’re Ready to Rise!

Yikes – it was hard. Hard to overcome the thought that I was self-centered or self-serving if I clearly laid out on my website what I could offer you and your organization and why I think I’m qualified to do so! I ran the gauntlet of what will they think questions.

Yet, the push I felt to tell about myself in a I-believe-it-to-be true-way and here’s why propelled me on. So I did, in fact I spent a lot of time yesterday doing just that. And I had help, the wise council of my eldest daughter, Ashley.

And then, just as I was putting my feet up to read from my current book How Women Rise: Break the 12 Habits Holding You Back from Your Next Raise, Promotion, or Job this jumped off the page: “Speaking up about what you can contribute and detailing why you’re qualified does not make you self-centred or self-serving. It sends a signal that you’re ready to rise.”

The authors, Sally Helgesen and Marshall Goldsmith, go on to say that women are “more likely to express doubt” about who they are and that “effectively marketing yourself, far from being shameful, is an important part of every job – and key to helping you reach the next level of success.” (72-73)

And this, oh this hit me: “If you don’t find a way to speak about the value of what you’re doing, you send a message that you don’t put much value on it. And if you don’t value it, why should anyone else?” *Gulp*- it’s true.

I found it hard putting it out there, asking my friends and those I have worked with to write a review of me, but if I am going to be successful in my life mission to Equip & Inspire People to Lead with Growing Confidence and Excellence, what I have to offer is both unique to me and necessary information for those considering working with me. And the same is true for you and your career and those considering taking the next step in hiring you.

It’s not a shameful thing to have gone to school and perhaps finished top in your class (or not!), to be successful in your job and to highlight some of your successes, and to have a passion to help others. Nor is it a shameful thing to put out there what makes you qualified in your field and how you can help others.

For many of us women, we’d rather deflect and not own. But I want to encourage you today that if you’re the brand, if you’re looking to grow your business and you’re at a season of having to bravely tell about yourself and the unique contribution you can bring, it’s okay! And not only is it okay, it’s important that you do it, and do it truthfully and confidently!

Friend, are you ready to rise in your unique calling?

Is there a brave next step that you need to take?

Leaning into the rise,

Pastor Carmen


  1. Yes. It’s about the heart behind the promotion. I have to think “Is it to help others with the gifts I have to offer, or is it to make me look good or maybe look better than I am”. It’s all about motive and heart. 🙂

    1. Absolutely! Heart and heart motives matter. One of the things the research is showing is that women have a harder time identifying, naming, and drawing attention to what they can or are contributing. It’s why they’re often not positioning themselves for promotions or vocalizing their dreams. We tend to believe that people should see our contribution and value it, and then we are discouraged with unmet expectations.

      We’ve also adopted an either/or mindset instead of finding the balance inbetween. And by that I mean, because some of us know self-centered people, we think if we put anything out there we are like them. We need to take a step back, know our why, and find a way to communicate – honestly and truly – how we can assists and what we can bring of value.

      The book I mentioned in my post is a great read!

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